In our "Early Holiday Unwrapped" series, Pamela Edwards Christiani of Essence magazine, shared how to insure you'll be invited back to a party again -- give a great hostess gift!
But first, what is a bad hostess gift?
Christiani said anything that requires a host to do anything is a bad gift. She said flowers are a bad gift because they require the hostess to find a vase. Also, a cheap wine is another big no-no.
Christiani shared these inventive ideas on "The Early Show":
The following product descriptions were prepared using information provided by the manufacturers.
Eat Drink and Be Merry
Godiva Chocolate For Breakfast, $85, Godiva.com. Godiva has a new, scrumptious Baked Goods Collection available online only. One of my favorite items is the Chocolate for Breakfast basket. If ordered by end of day Wednesday, select standard delivery to guarantee arrival by Christmas. Otherwise, overnight orders for pre-Christmas arrival will be taken until December 23.
Buttermilk Pancake Waffle Mix, Raisin Scone Mix, Godiva Dark Chocolate Callets 2 - 2oz coffees, Cocoa Sampler, Organic Acacia Honey, Wild Maine Blueberry Jam, 8pc Godiva Gold Ballotin (truffles), Recipe Card, Mixing Bowl.
Lillet French Apertiff 18.99, local liquor stores or Lillet.com. -Alternative to expected wine/champagne gift. Lillet is a blend of 85 percent wine and 15 percent citrus liqueurs. Best way to drink it is on the rocks, with a slice of orange, great before dinner. Stimulates the appetite
Williams Sonoma Apple Cider Concentrate and Mulling Spice Gift Set, $28, with Santa ornament, $42.95. House smells like heaven, hot tasty drink that everyone can enjoy. Non-alcoholic alternative. Makes a gallon.
Here's To A Happy Home
Lilly Pulitzer Cocktail Shaker, $39.95, Lilly Pulitzer freestanding stores or Lilly Pulitzer.com. The perfect gift for a social butterfly. Must-have for a hostess who loves to mix a mad martini.
Melamine Monogram Trays, $45, Fontaine Maury.com. Takes five business days to process the order. Have it for years, every time she uses it she'll think of you.
Crate & Barrel Christmas Tree Ornaments, Bird Cages $3.50, Antique Swirl Balls, all under $10, Crate and Barrel stores nationwide or Crate and Barrel.com. So appreciated by the hostess who loves to decorate for the Holidays. Again, she'll think of you each year when she adorns her tree.
DayNa Decker Enviroments Multi-sensory candles and diffusers $3oz is $32, 6oz is $57, 16oz $76. Harmonious marriage of nature and science. Uunique indulgence, patent-pending eco-wood wicks, organic, burns clean, emits a soothing crackling sound. Longer burn hours due to a cooler flame. Harmonius marriage of nature and science. "Crackles softly like the nuances of a fireplace." The diffusers, Le Petit Diffuser $57, Diffuser $94, Diffusers: last 8 months. We don't use an alcohol base, but botanical oil. Available at Neiman Marcus, Saks and Bergdorf Goodman.
Give Her A Little "Me Time"
Movie gift certificates
Boots Original Beauty Formula Gift Set, Bath Foam and Lotion, $24.99, Target Stores. Great because it includes full-size product. Bath Foam in a pretty fancy bottle.
Me Bath Bath IceCream, $8.50 each, (look best in a glass bowl, outside of packaging) Each flavorful and moisturizing bath fizz melts immediately in water releasing nourishing café con leche, gotta have it pomegranite, papaya nector, strawberry kiwi. Mebath.com.